Microseismic Monitoring of Chocolate Bayou Texas The Pleasant Bayou No.2 Geopressured/Geothermal Energy Test Well Program

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Mauk, Frederick J.

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Commercial utilization of the geopressured brines underlying the Gulf Coast as unconventional geothermal-methane energy sources is dependent upon high volumetric production rates. The production requirements for effective withdrawal and disposal of these highly saline brines are believed to be near 3 X 10^4 bbl/day/well. Such high volumetric productions can substantially alter the ambient state of stress of the local geological column, potentially resulting in reactivation of preexisting zones of weakness as well as causing new fracture development.

To investigate normal ambient seismicity as well as potentially enhanced seismic activity induced by brine production, Teledyne Geotech, with the authorization of the Texas Bureau of Economic Geology, has conducted a seismic monitoring program in the vicinity of the Chocolate Bayou geopressured test well (the Pleasant Bayou No. 2) since September 1978. The Pleasant Bayou No. 2 well has been completed and perforated at depths of 14,467 - 14,707 feet (4464.4 - 4482.7m). The brines produced from the Pleasant Bayou No. 2 well are reinjected at a depth of 6226 - 6538 feet (1897.7 - 1992.8m) in the Pleasant Bayou No. 1 well. This report describes the seismic monitoring network and results obtained from January through November 1981.


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